Frequently Asked Questions
Where is the island?
Fitzroy island is located 29 kilometers south-east of Cairns, with transfers taking only 45 minutes by ferry.
Where do we need to go to get the Ferry?
All passengers check in at the Reef Fleet Terminal. The Cairns Reef Fleet Terminal is located at 1 Spence Street (see a map here) which is a short walk from the Cairns Esplanade Lagoon, and is situated on the right hand side of the Pier Market Place. There are 3 ferry operators offering a number of departures daily. A ferry ride from the Cairns Reef Fleet Terminal Marina takes approximately 45 minutes.
What is the snorkelling like on the island?
Snorkelling in Welcome Bay and off Nudey Beach offers the chance to explore a fringing reef supporting many species of fish and invertebrates. Snorkelling in other locations around the island may be dangerous due to strong currents. The sea kayak tour, with a skilled guide, is the best way to access some of the more remote and beautiful fringing reefs systems.
When is the best time to go to the Great Barrier Reef?
The Great Barrier Reef is beautiful all year round. The stinger season is from around November to May. It is unlikely that box jellyfish would be encountered at Fitzroy Island due to the 4 km passage between the island and the mainland, but they have been found there occasionally, as well as other stinging jellyfish. During this time it is recommended to wear a stinger suit.
When is the best weather?
The weather in Cairns for most of the year is ideal for visiting the region. Clear skies, gentle winds and warm weather make your stay in Far North Queensland enjoyable. Unlike other places, there are two seasons in North Queensland, the ‘wet’ and the ‘dry’ season. The wet season the lasts from November to April, brings heavy rainfall with some months having over 400 mm of rain and high humidity due to the tropical surroundings. The dry season that lasts from May to October is therefore the most popular time of the year for visitors to the region. The humidity is more still high but bearable and rain is usually just light showers. The average temperature throughout the year is between 19 to just over 30 degrees Celsius.
For more information see the tourism information links below:
What do I need to Bring ?
Similar to visiting the beach, sunscreen, a hat, sunglasses, and protective clothing. Enclosed foot wear if you plan on doing some of the high graded walks. The water on the island is drinkable, however, we do recommend that you bring your own. There are taps around the island to refill your water bottles. If staying at the resort then overnight gear and if camping then camp gear.
Can we walk around the whole Island?
Fitzroy Island is a large island with rugged terrain and sometimes impenetrable vegetation. Walking tracks in the national park provide visitors with the opportunity to explore a range of vegetation communities and scenic landscapes.There are four walks available, from 25 mins return to 3 hrs return. Ensure to take water with you on any of the walks.
When is Stinger Season?
Irukandji, (‘stingers’) are small transparent jellyfish, one to two centimeters in diameter, usually never seen. Stingers may be present in the coastal waters at any time, but occur more frequently in the warmer months. Whilst Fitzroy island is not know for stingers, they are present in Far Northern waters approximately November – May, so all guests are recommended to wear a full-body lycra suit. Lycra suits provide a good measure of protection against stingers and sunburn.
Are there luggage restrictions for the ferry?
Generally there are no restrictions, however, you must be able to load and off load your own items. Large items (such as kayaks) or excessive luggage or large eskies would require approval and additional fees may apply. Please contact us prior to travel in order to make the necessary arrangements.
Can you do any Fishing on the Island?
Fitzroy Island and the surrounding marine waters are internationally significant and are protected in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area. Zones in the two marine parks—the Great Barrier Reef Coast and Great Barrier Reef provide a balanced approach to protecting the marine and intertidal environments while allowing recreational and commercial use. Check zoning information and maps before entering or conducting any activities in the marine parks.
Is there food available on the island?
Yes, meals and drinks are available at Foxy’s tavern at the southern end of the island, and there is also a small convenience store offering packaged food and drink. For resort guests Zephyr Restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and the Resort Pool Bar offers a range of cocktails, coffees and a light snacks.
Can I bring my own alcohol?
Fitzroy Island Resort is a licensed premises and BYO alcohol is not permitted onto the island in any form. All alcohol brought onto the island will be held by the resort until day of departure.
Is Fitzroy Island wheelchair accessible?
Fitzroy Island Resort is wheelchair friendly and has several wheelchair accessible rooms. Access to the glass bottom boat can be difficult due to a coral-covered beach before you can enter the boat. Access to snorkelling can also be difficult as beach access is difficult due to serious erosion. However if you can negotiate these difficulties, the snorkelling is well worth your efforts! Foxy's Bar has limited wheelchair access ( one step up or down to the various sections of the bar), and there is no wheelchair-accessible toilet near the bar (however the resort buiilding has one in the reception area). There are no wheelchair-accessible tracks in the national park.